Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Meet Sarah from Cafe Tempest: Adventures on a Small Greek Island by Barbara Bonfigli

1. What is the name of the book where we would meet you? /"Café Tempest: Adventures on a Small Greek Island" What genre is it? /Fiction

2. Who wrote the book? /Barbara Bonfigli

3. What do you think of the author? You can tell us the truth. /She has excellent powers of observation, having picked me out of a crowded world.

4. Tell us a little about yourself. How would you describe your appearance? That's more than just really cute or drop dead gorgeous. Give us enough detail to get a clear idea of how you look./I look you directly in the eye. I never wear shoes unless I have to. My hair is difficult to control. Loud music keeps me out of a lot of trendy restaurants. How do I appear? Either concentrating or day dreaming. The details of my physical appearance I leave to your imagination. I wouldn't want to spoil your picture of me as you read my novel.

5. What character are you in the book? Are you the hero, the best friend, the side kick, the hero and heroine's child or someone else? / The hero, being the narrator and principal voice. But there are several major players on this stage.

6. Is there a specific reason why you're in the story? Don't give us any story spoilers, but you can share some teasers if you want./The story cannot exist without the storyteller, and that's me.

7. What time period do you live in? / The recent present.

8. Where are you from?/ Northern California. But I've lived in several other countries. I'm presently living in London and spending part of every year in Greece.

9. Do you live in the same place now? / I live between the covers of the book you're reading -- "Café Tempest: Adventures on a Small Greek Island." Wherever you take me, there I am. And thanks very much for introducing me to all these places.

10. Tell us about your hometown and your current home./ Coming from California I'm very fond of fresh fruits and vegetables and sunshine. Sunshine is pretty much the same everywhere. Most of what passes for fruits and vegetables elsewhere in America tastes like their pictures on seed catalogues. California is also very large, so that when I travel in Europe and cross borders every few hours I feel like Vasco de Gama. London is a fabulous city. Almost no one at my gym speaks English as their first language, but we all understand sweat and effort. As a theatre producer I'm in bliss in London since all the actors answer their own phones and will agree to be in anything good; they don't consider every role a "career move."

11. Tell us how your hometown or your current home effects you, the things you do and how you feel about life? / I live in a country in which people often speak in complete sentences. Taxi drivers know their way around. Strawberries are only sold in season. There's an excellent yoga studio within walking distance even in the rain. I love it here. If I tell you any more too many people will want to move here and they might crowd out this small discreet island.

12. What special skills or abilities do you have? / My coffee is superb. I can furl a mainsail without too many crinks. I can often figure out what people are trying to say though I don't understand their language. That's about it. And I write good ads for the play I produce.

13. How do those affect your part in the story?/ I attract men who think I can cook. It's hard to convince them otherwise; I'd have to cook something really awful and why would I do that?

14. Are you happy with the story? Katapliktika! (not in the Glossary I'm afraid. It's a big yes.)

15. Do you have some ideas that the author should consider about the story? You can share them with us. We're all friends here. /The author should have allowed me more time to swim and given me the chance to drink some really excellent Greek wines. She did find me a beautiful island to spend the summer on and I hope she'll figure out how to get me back here next year.

16. Tell us about your past. Can you share one really good experience and/or one really bad experience? I know that bad experience can be tough, but it would tell us more about what you've been through./ I was surprised when my boyfriend Julian decided our affair was over the same week the show we were producing closed. We were both working so hard on the production I had no idea anything else was going on. (This all happens before the book begins.) At an early point in the story my friend Alex asks me to consider inviting Julian to the island, but I don't think it's worth re-igniting a fire I hadn't noticed was burning out. When he calls the island and mentions that the costume designer he'd moved in with no longer interests him, and that he misses me, I decide not to take the hint. One of the best things about travel is the perspective you gain by the simple act of removing yourself. With a little beach time and reflection I realize Julian had the right idea; we were not destined for a long run.

17. Who is the most important person in your life? Tell us about them./ At the moment it's Monika. She's playful and funny and she says exactly what's on her mind. That's provocative and exciting because her reactions to people and events are original. And she sees through the eyes of a visual artist, which is a great compliment to a writer's mind.

18. Is that person in the story we're talking about? / Yes. My understanding it that we're talking here from inside my character's head.

19. How does that person impact you and your life?/ Monika impresses me for her wit, her originality, her sensuality, her talents. The ease with which she navigates the dramas of daily existence suggests a person who knows herself. I consider this the grand prize in the game of life and definitely the sort of person you'd hope to have as a lifelong friend...maybe even live with.

20. Do you have any children?/ No.

21. If you do, tell us about them. If you don't have any children, you can tell us why not - but, only if you want to tell us. Thanks for asking good questions and for knowing when to back off. All my fellow characters are worthy of an interview like this one; luckily they didn't know about this. Stefano and Arabella would certainly be making a fuss.

22. What do you see in your future?/ The mantra article I've just finished may lead to other writing on spiritual themes. And the concept of "you love who you love" is very interesting to me. I'd like to explore both those areas in writing and in life. I'll also be finding and producing plays. And I'll be practicing yoga so I can continue to enjoy running swimming walking exploring and eating unlimited amounts of goat cheese.

23. Do you think your author is going to write another story about you? Or, are you part of a series? /The author doesn't keep her imagination under wraps but she doesn't comment on the future, having good friends who are renowned astrologers and who steer clear of predictions.

24. Do you like being a character in a book?/ I love the possibilities. There's Nothing you can't imagine doing between covers.

25. If someone ever decides to make a movie based on your story, who should play you in the movie and why? I think this book is likely to be made into a film and as per #23 I'm not going to predict who'd play me. She'll have to have a pretty good sense of humor and of course a taste for retsina. You can't fake that.

Efharisto, Sarah

To learn about Barbara Bonfigli and Café Tempest, feel free to visit any of these sites.

Order Café Tempest directly from the publisher – http://www.tellmepress.com/pub_ct.php or from Amazon http://www.amazon.com/Café-Tempest-Adventures-Small-Island/dp/0981645313

To see the complete tour schedule visit http://virtualblogtour.blogspot.com/2009/05/cafe-tempest-by-barbara-bonfigli-summer.html

Barbara Bonfigli’s website – www.cafetempest.com


  1. Sarah's delighted to have cracked the American blog universe. She's back in London reading scripts to choose her Winter production, but she's already dreaming of next summer in Greece. Meanwhile she plans to serve the Tempestini at a drinks party this weekend. No telling what it will do for sales of "Café Tempest" but it will certainly raise her status among the British cocktail mavens who think Greece is strictly a Metaxa brandy haven. Thanks for a fun, imaginative interview. I hope my fellow characters will read it and chime in. Barbara

  2. no problems in doing so; excellent interview- loving regards-mono